Thursday, July 16, 2009

New fruits

It’s not often that I find a fruit or vegetable I’ve never tried. I tend to eat all the weird things that no one has ever heard of, and it can be a challenge to find new ones to add to the list.

In our first trip to the supermarket, I was intrigued by these little berries:

They’re called Johannisbeere, and they come in red and black. They’re all over the place here; every supermarket has them. Of course, I had to try them.

So, I bought 500 g this afternoon.

They are very sour, just a little on the sweet side of a cranberry. Taste a little like cherries, and a little like grapes, but also not quite like either.

These are not berries that you would want to eat out of hand (or at least not more than one), which leaves me wondering what to do with them.

An internet search identifies Johannisbeere as currants, and suggests jam or other things with lots of sugar. I don’t have enough berries for a jam, and I don’t have an oven to make the myriad baked goods suggested, so I’m going to have to get creative. I’m thinking pancakes, but we’ll see what happens.

I also added dragon fruit to my list of things that I’ve tried. Ice cream shops are very popular here, almost like coffee shops in Seattle; every other building downtown seems to have an “Eis” sign. We were walking around downtown last week, and stopped to get some ice cream. I thought I was ordering raspberry based on the color, but one taste and it was clear that it was a fruit I’d never tasted before. That’s the fun thing about ordering from menus when you have no idea what they say. You’re very likely to be surprised.

At least this surprise was a good one. I like dragon fruit, apparently. It’s sort of like raspberry (maybe because that’s what I was expecting), but it’s also a lot like melon. Maybe a little bit like mango.

Actually, it makes me think of Air Heads candy for some reason. I have no idea what flavor. It’s been at least 10 years since I had an Air Heads, so who knows if they actually taste like dragon fruit, but that’s what comes to mind as something similar. I’m sure that the artificial flavoring of Air Heads candy does no justice to the fruit, anyway.

Unlike Johannisbeere, dragon fruit isn’t a particularly German thing. Google says that it’s an asian fruit, and I haven’t seen the fruit itself in shops here. I’ll have to look for the real fruit next time I’m in an asian grocery store…I think it would be worth a try.

1 comment:

  1. That's the sort of thing you expect moving to China or India, right?

    In Canada Joanne and I discovered a little yellow type of tomato called <?=Joanne.ask("name of weird little tomato")?> that's absolutely everywhere, but that we had never seen state-side before.

    Keep enjoying the little adventures in the unexpected places they happen.